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Stakes test looms for Shamardani
Mandy Cottell
15:29 AEST Fri Dec 14 2012

Greg Hickman will use Saturday's Rosehill meeting as a stepping stone to a black-type test for Shamardani.

The mare was an eye-catching second to Bound To Blush over 1200 metres two starts ago and was beaten just over 2-1/2 lengths when seventh over 1500m last time out.

She drops back to 1200m in Saturday's Ascend Sales Trophies Handicap, more by necessity than design.

"There wasn't really another suitable race for her," Hickman said.

"But I'm really happy with her. She worked well on Tuesday.

"I want to run her in the Belle of the Turf Stakes in a few weeks."

Hickman has had few city runners in recent months but that is set to change in the coming weeks.

He took nine horses to the Warwick Farm barrier trials on Friday, five of them two-year-olds, and the majority will be ready to race early in the new year.

Hickman said his quiet period had been self-enforced.

"I decided to leave all my babies and a lot of my horses out until they fixed the new track at Warwick Farm," he said.

"I have been really quiet and patient because in the long run I think it will work out for the best."

He said he had another batch of horses being prepared for the next set of Warwick Farm trials, including the promising Taxmeifyoucan and Definite Choice who is on the comeback trail after more than a year off through injury.